This post has been a long time in the making – months, as a matter of fact.
At the start of the growing season, I was strolling through one of the big box stores and found a corm for a red/purple/black leafed variety. I had seen this same plant in many of the seed catalogs – but in this store, the price was more than right. It was an elephant-sized bargain.
Once the plant began to grow, however, the only thing true about the advertised color was the stems – strong and purplish black. The leaves, on the other hand, were greener (and smaller, by the way) – not the same bright green as my other Elephant Ears, but green with hints of darker tones. In other words, they weren’t the red/purple/black on the packaging.
Although slightly disappointed with the result, I soon found myself drawn to my new plant, especially the glossiness of the leaves. They were so shiny, in fact, that they looked fake, as if they stepped right off of the Munchkinland set in The Wizard of Oz.
And then I witnessed the miracle of an Elephant Ear leaf birth – the agonizingly slow unfurling of a new leaf emerging from the purple/black stem.
Over the next few weeks, I stood in the same spot to document the debut – like a proud papa tapping on the nursery window.
Weeks since it first emerged from the stem, the leaf is still stretching and growing to to its full size. Whoever said they grow so fast these days, never had an Elephant Ear.
35 thoughts on “Elephant Ear Gives Birth — LIVE!”
Exquisite photos, Kevin! Congratulations!
Hi Lori. Thanks — see you soon!
Fabulous photography. Amazing to think such a huge leaf can spring from such a slender stem with it’s own stem too!
Hi Jane. Thanks for the compliment. The fact that this has been my entertainment for a few weeks should prove how exciting my life really is. 🙂
I was wondering when you said you’d said ‘Over the next few weeks, I stood in the same spot to document the debut’…such dedication!
I guess I should clarify — I positioned myself in the same spot, took some photos, and then walked away. The last thing I want is to be mistaken for a garden statue. That’s a messy job.
Now that most definitely is the miracle of birth… great pics. Great post. Amazing!
Hi Carolyn. Yes, a definite miracle — so glad you enjoyed it. Be well.
Very cool pictures. So an Elephant Ear look’s like an elephant trunk as it begins to unfurl.
Nice analogy! 🙂
That was like time lapse photography, Kevin! Very interesting shots!!
Hi Astrid. Glad you enjoyed the photos. I would have loved to have created a time lapse film — but there is only so much tech stuff I can wrap my head around. 🙂
Fantastic, I love looking back at thow things grow! and wow what a beauty !
On the plus side, at least you didn’t have to wait the normal time for an elephant gestation 🙂
LOL. Never mind the mother elephant — I don’t think I would have had the stamina!
The new leaf almost looks like a caterpillar in the first shot. I have iris that create new leaves like this. The comparison to a birth is very accurate. 🙂
It’s funny that you say that. I was on the other side of the yard when I first saw the bit of green — and from that distance, I thought it was a major caterpillar. I’d rather have the leaf! 🙂
Passing out cigars, Papa?
How your post bighten my days, and even inspire me when I’m feeling done-in.
Cheryl, you are too kind. Many thanks.
Terrific photos. Jack in the pulpit gives birth to leaves in much the same way.
Hi Mark. Glad you were able to stop by for a visit. It’s a very cool process to watch.
What a wonderful photo essay! Are you going to try again for the more colorful variety? This one is gorgeous all in green! Debra
Hi Debra. The nice thing about gardening, especially at this time of year as we take stock of the garden’s performance, is we can say, “There’s always next year.” 🙂
Hi Cindy. Thanks for the vote of confidence. 🙂
Love it! It was such a cute little baby! Almost all grown up now!
As I write this, I’m staring at the leaf. I think it’s a teenager now. 🙂
Amazing photo essay!
Hi Diane. Glad you enjoyed it.
Congratulations on the new arrival 🙂 Amazing that it took weeks to unfold! Great photos and such great colours, even if they were not what you expected. Sometimes that is the beauty of gardening, getting a surprise!
Hi Helene. Thanks. The bouncing baby leaf certainly has its strong points — and, yes, it was a pleasant surprise.
Great photos. Despite the different colour this is one pretty plant. I like the dark veining in those leaves.
Hi Marguerite. It is very pretty — and the leaves are attractive, especially against the darkness of stems.
Up till now I haven’t liked Elephant Ears because they have not been very successful in my garden… BUT your blog and stunning photography has totally changed my mind. Thank you so much for posting this magical experience. No magazine, book or newspaper article would have been able to capture this ‘live birth’ the way that you were able. WOW!
I do hope you give them another try. Just remember that they’re tropical and love heat, humidity, and water. I’ve written about Elephant Ears in the past, including their planting and overwintering — feel free to explore. And many thanks for your kind words.
Pingback: Bloomin’ Update 34: Everybody’s Talkin’ ‘Bout Miss Thing « Nitty Gritty Dirt Man